We’ve been watching parent birds helping their young ones make their way in the world. This year, the cardinal pair that lives near us had 3 female young. They have been bringing their young to our yard every year for about 4 years. The male cardinal gathers seeds, and flies up to the honey locust tree branches to three waiting daughters. They get so excited when he brings them food, they fluff their wings and make little noises. He flies up and down, one seed at a time. The next morning, the young cardinals were down at ground level looking around for seeds themselves, while their dad kept feeding them.
We had a basil pesto-making workshop a few years ago where one woman brought her 3 kids. They helped gather the basil from the garden, put it in the food processor with the olive oil, salt, nuts, and parmesan cheese, and then we ate it on pasta with fresh tomatoes they had gathered. They loved it! The mother was surprised, saying, those girls would not eat it when I made it at home. Here, they ate every bite.
When I was young, my parents brought me to the Fredericton Boyce Farmer’s Market. I had so much fun there and the vendors made special efforts to involve young people. I remember they would pick me up and put me on the big balance scale. They would give me a cucumber with a bend in it and challenge me to carry it hooked on my arm until I reached the cheese vendor. If I could, I could keep it. I’ve had a love of cucumbers ever since.
Now that the farm has been operating for 10 years, I’ve seen many families bring their kids to pick up vegetables. And those kids are growing up!
On the subject of cucumbers, our cucumbers have been ugly from pest damage. We are bringing them to market, but the price is very low. They just have to be peeled. Our netting to cover the greenhouse just arrived (finally!) from China, so we hope we can supply better-looking cucumbers soon.